AEW Dark Review: 12/15/2020
Bear Country. A tag team called Bear Country debuted on AEW Dark this week and absolutely became the talk of the town within minutes. Don’t confuse them with Panda X-Press, though. A new tag team popping up wasn’t the only thing of note on yet another stacked episode of Dark.
There were a total of 14 matches, with five of them being women’s matches. There were some solid bouts throughout the night though and some matches that absolutely stood out. The nice thing was a few of them mixed up the formula fans have been used to seeing.
It’s also worth noting that Taz and Excalibur had several guests on commentary, including Anthony Ogogo, Thunder Rosa and “Pretty” Peter Avalon. Honestly, Avalon was pretty gosh darn good on commentary. AEW should explore that further.
.@Perfec10n & Tully Blanchard were special guests on the Waiting Room hosted by @RealBrittBaker. But, someone else crashed the party.— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) December 16, 2020
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This week’s edition of “The Waiting Room” was exceptional. Rebel continues to be the MVP of the segment, with her insane laughter and other weird responses. Shawn Spears and Tully Blanchard were Britt’s guests, only to be interrupted by Marko Stunt at the door with a maniacal look on his face.
The next interruption was Scorpio Sky who attacked Spears and tossed him through the back of the set. Rebel’s deranged screaming sold the moment. This was the exact kind of chaos that should be going down on “The Waiting Room” on a more regular basis.
Sonny and Joey pick up the win
After too long of a drought, Sonny Kiss and Joey Janela picked up an important tag team victory. AEW’s booking of these two has been somewhat inconsistent, so hopefully this is the beginning of a solid run for them. In a company that has “official” rankings, wins matter.
The Acclaimed also picked up a solid victory, continuing their monster push. Having that kind of momentum going into their match with SCU on Dynamite will prove to be important. Brandon Cutler and Leva Bates also picked up wins, though what that’s building up to remains to be seen.
Tay Conti looked amazing in her bout on Dark, as did Anna Jay and Ivelisse. Fuego Del Sol and Shawn Dean chalked up a loss to Jurassic Express as one would expect, but they both looked good doing it. Hopefully, there’s a next step for both of them in the near future.
KiLynn King lost to the current AEW Women’s Champion, Hikaru Shida. But King looked great in the match so she definitely earned some respect. Hikaru continues to prove that she’s one of the best wrestlers in the business. The post-match featured an attack from Abadon, an excellent build to their upcoming match.
Team Taz also had a great episode of Dark with both Brian Cage and Ricky Starks picking up solid wins. Not enough people are talking about Starks’ spear. It’s easily one of the best in the business and actually looks like he’s devastating his opponents when he hits it.
Matt Sydal and Chaos Project continue as is
The main event of the evening featured Best Friends getting the win over Chaos Project. Best Friends were great, as always, but Chaos Project continues to meh up the ring. Luther and Serpentico are good wrestlers but the only reason they’re together is that AEW couldn’t figure out what else to do with them.
Ultimately, there’s no chemistry there. It’s just two weirdos being weird together. This match was better than some of their other matches as their offense wasn’t just Luther using Serpentico as a weapon. It would be nice to see the main event to have featured Best Friends against a more interesting tag team, like Bear Country.
It should go without saying at this point that Matt Sydal is an amazing athlete. He pulls off moves in the ring that have been blowing minds for years. And he has been really upping his submission game as of late, adding another dimension to his matches.
While he’s been in AEW for a while, why he’s in AEW remains a mystery. He kind of comes across as a happy version of Pac, keeping in mind that there’s more to Sydal than that one-dimensional assessment. AEW already has a big collection of high flyers so it’s hard to see where Sydal fits in right now.
Bear Country debuts
Dark always seems to have at least one new wrestler or tag team debut each week. Some of them come across as jobbers, though they still usually have potential to be more. Then, there are debuts like Top Flight who immediately connect with the audience. Bear Country had one of those debuts.
Bear Boulder and Bear Bronson made their mark on Dark, losing to Evil Uno and Stu Grayson from Dark Order. They were immediately reminiscent of Heavy Machinery, two big men pulling off big, athletic moves. The main difference between the teams would be that Vince McMahon hasn’t totally ruined Bear Country.
They are a couple of big boys who pulled off some huge moves. That included a huge cannonball into the corner with one Bear on the other Bear’s back for the ride. It was a crazy thing to watch happen. Bear Country definitely has potential if AEW is willing to invest in them.